Wednesday 24 December 2014

The Old Woman of the Roads

At this time of year I feel more grateful than ever to have a house of my own — though humble it may be. It brings to mind a poem I learned in school many years ago which I will quote hereon:-
The Old Woman of the Roads 
Oh to have a little house!
To own the hearth and stool and all!
The heaped-up sods upon the fire,
The pile of turf against the wall! 
To have a clock with weights and chains,
And pendulum swinging up and down!
A dresser filled with shining delph,
Speckled with white and blue and brown! 
I could be busy all the day
Cleaning and sweeping hearth and floor,
And fixing on their shelf again
My white and blue and speckled store! 
I could be quiet there at night
Beside the fire and by myself,
Sure of a bed and loath to leave
The ticking clock and the shining delph! 
Och! but I'm weary of mist and dark,
And roads where there's never a house nor bush,
And tired I am of bog and road,
And the crying wind and the lonesome hush! 
And I am praying to God on high,
And I am praying Him night and day
For a little house—a house of my own—
Out of the wind's and rain's way. 
— Padraic Colum

Saturday 20 December 2014

"If" Final Verse

The following is the final verse of If by Rudyard Kipling:
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings—nor lose the common touch;
If neither foe nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run—
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And—which is more—you'll be a Man, my son!

Monday 15 December 2014

Important Football Win for Cahir

County Tipperary SFC Semi-Final:

Cahir 2-10; Thomas McDonaghs 3-5

In yesterday's Tipperary Senior Football Championship semi-final, Cahir beat Thomas McDonaghs by 2-10 to 3-5. It was important for football in the county that a club like Cahir, which has always promoted Gaelic Football as well as Hurling, should defeat an amalgamation of about seven clubs from North Tipperary who have never shown any interest in Gaelic Football down the years. In the final Cahir will play the great dual club, Loughmore-Castleiney, who beat Aherlow/Lattin-Cullen in the other semi-final.

The saddest part is that the most  important games of the championship are being played over the last four Sundays of the year.

The championship competitions in most grades in the county have been badly run for many years. It is completely wrong to have the Under-21 Hurling Championships, which I consider the best competition of all because it is graded, starting in October as has been happening for some time. Junior B is given greater priority which is ridiculous. The competitions should be structured in such a way that all are completed before the end of October taking into account replays and county team involvement in the All-Ireland Championships.

There are too many meaningless games being played. When the number of participating teams is high, the championships should have teams playing in small groups where even the loss of one game would put pressure on them to stay in contention. The winners of each group should then play off on a knock-out basis. A move away from running championships like leagues should happen. For leagues, the county should be divided into two sections with promotion and relegation between groups. Clubs should not have to travel long distances to play games which would make it unattractive.

Thursday 11 December 2014

The Wind that Shakes the Barley

There's music in my heart all day,
I hear it late and early,
It comes from fields are far away,
The wind that shakes the barley.

Above the uplands drenched with dew
The sky hangs soft and pearly,
An emerald world is listening to
The wind that shakes the barley.

Above the bluest mountain crest
The lark is singing rarely,
It rocks the singer into rest,
The wind that shakes the barley.

Oh, still through summers and through springs
It calls me late and early.
Come home, come home, come home it sings
The wind that shakes the barley.

Katherine Tynan